Wanda Waldera © 2014 All Rights Reserved

A Thaw
            With us always: the mark of ecstasy, the lesson without joy
—Roland Danforth

A branch torn from its ashen socket
Still hangs, sways slightly by the fray
Of tendon—the refusal exposed
In bands of sapless white; the ice

Is gone, disintegrated into dull cones
Drop by drop; only the blackened joints
And shoots remain; frail wires snap
At the knuckle and, without ceremony,

Fall to earth; the limb will not let go;
It persists like a miserable talisman,
A grim fact; the bleak and hoary night
Cannot be endured without sacrifice.


Jonathan Cook
Copyright © 2014  

Jonathan Cook is currently working toward his MFA in poetry at San Jose State University. His work has previously appeared in publications such as the New Plains Review, Matter Journal, Reed Magazine, and The Sand Canyon Review.

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